The Predicament and the Product
Spring 2002 Update To all waiting for versatile and low- risk reproductive safety for their clinics and prevention programs, to those who seek new means to help stabilize world population growth, to individuals worldwide seeking effective prevention for themselves and their partners, to volunteers, friends and well-wishers: This is what has happened to date, in the development and educational outreach work of JANESWAY Panty Condom.
Then in the early 1980’s, news of the AIDS virus spread around the world, followed by the virus itself quickly thereafter. The world was very ready for more chemicals, as the Pill was the major means of preventing conception. Pharmaceuticals saw potential in this totally new disease for which they might supply products. People the world over took their chances as they waited. Five, ten, fifteen, twenty years slipped by, and people are still taking their chances around the world, with many unfortunate consequences. Male condoms are still the main barrier for prevention of disease.
Male condoms are the only option for men, for either contraception or disease prevention. A man has absolutely no choice…unless he wants a vasectomy, and that won’t help with disease prevention. Women have many choices for contraception, from the Pill to the Patch to tubal ligations, but no options for disease prevention, except talking their partners into using male condoms or dental dams. The whole human race is counting on these imperfect barriers. (See the Salon .com article, 7/21/00 “Does safe sex really exist?” by Arthur Allen) Practiced partners can get failure rates pretty low, but common use rates are about 9-11% failure. In some situations, you could be playing sexual roulette with your life.
Also, the truth is, male condoms never had to go through the FDA required clinical testing, because they were already in existence before the FDA began. People frequently ask us why should a female condom made of latex have to go through extensive FDA testing now, especially at such a crucial time? Isn’t the use basically the same? The concept is a sheet of latex between a man and a women. The man holds the male condom with his body during sex. Shouldn’t a woman have equal rights to hold a piece of latex with her body during sex?
Not so says the FDA, any such product would be an entirely new medical device and must be thoroughly tested before it is approved for public use. This is only part of the predicament of JANESWAY …. built to fit the inside of a woman.
Conceived in the early 1980’s when there was virtually no AIDS in the USA, the concept languished for five years in the US Patent and Trade Office. JANESWAY incorporated, and the crew became a corporation, and everyone was sure that this wonderful product would soon be a welcome addition in the war on AIDS. Years dragged on, and various levels of red tape were tangled and untangled.
Meanwhile, JANESWAY Panty Condom was often the most visited booth at such conferences as Contraceptive Technology; Female Condom Conference in Washington, DC; Women and HIV in Los Angeles; Xth African AIDS Conference in Ivory Coast. At the World Health Organization (WHO) AIDS Conference, many educators and health officials around the world wrote letters of support for the development of JANESWAY as soon as possible, arguing that the design was simple, and the substance of latex was well documented for the intended use.
So ….WHERE IS IT ? The first required clinical trial has been completed, and the results will be published in a medical journal. But even outstanding results here will not get JANESWAY into the hands of those who need it worldwide. The pharmaceutical companies are occupied with their research on vaccines. The condom companies have their factories producing at full speed to provide male condoms. Venture capitalists want proof of exactly when they will begin to make their first millions before they get involved. Investors in the stock market lick their lips and moan “But I need investments that will double before the end of the year…”
Some of the over-fifty crowd think they have no need for such a product, relying on the fidelity of their long term relationships. That’s no help to their children and grandchildren, because for those who were born in 1970 or later, AIDS has always been a part of their lives, sometimes a factor in every act of sex. They are not jaded on the freedom of unprotected sex, and something new looks very good indeed. When introduced to JANESWAY for the first time, often men are the first to speak up, excited at the prospect, at even the possibility that there could be protection without the interruption of male condoms. Women love the idea that JANESWAY is attractive, and some express sexy thoughts that the man might offer this panty as an enhancement to their lovemaking. Everyone sighs….some think back to the good old days, and some long for a future with a sex life that doesn’t include fear.
Meanwhile, back at the predicament…who knows how many countless millions are being spent on research, and is it all legitimate, with well documented use of funds? Millions are being spent for “prevention” which is usually mis-labeled, and should be called “prevention messages” as most of the money does not provide anything that will actually prevent HIV or any other disease nor pregnancy. Still more millions are being spent for programs to ensure that morality prevents all of the above, with statistically unproven levels of success or failure. Then there’s the other end, where hundreds of charitable organizations vie for donations and grants numbering in the millions, and use these funds in various ways relating to HIV/AIDS, but first their CEO’s and staff get paid. And countless more millions are being spent by the victims of the epidemic, and by their compassionate friends and relatives who care for them.
Anonymous quote, circa 1985: Isn’t it deplorable that the cure is being fast-tracked rather than fast-tracking prevention. Prevention would do so much more to contain the epidemic while the cure is being researched. Note: But for TEN YEARS there was no research done on women.
THE BOTTOM LINE IS: that the cost of maintaining ten AIDS patients would pay for the clinical trials so JANESWAY could be available to help prevent the spread of this epidemic worldwide.
One black man in 50 has AIDS
One black woman in 160 has AIDS
One white gay man in 250 has AIDS
One white woman in 3000 has AIDS
But sad to say,
those white women are catching up quickly!
No one knows how many are HIV+
In 1983 Africa had these same percentages
for “their” black men and “their” black women.
Everybody said it couldn’t happen here….
It’s twenty years later, there’s still no real prevention.
Now babies are dying with this “gay men’s disease”
Why don’t the pharmeceutical companies help provide prevention? Answer:
The bottom line is ONE pill for AIDS = ONE BILLION $$$ +
Why don’t the CONDOM companies help provide prevention? Answer:
The bottom line is frozen….no competition is allowed.
Women buy 62% of male condoms in the USA
Not because they need contraception….
Think about it!
People over 50 have the money. They say
“We don’t know if this will be wanted, needed or used.
We’ll invest once it’s on the market.”
People under 30 say
“You mean there is some way to really be SAFE?!???!!!”
“Imagine having sex without fear!”
People in Africa say it,
Young women everywhere say it!
HOW can we help??
HOW can we GET help?
WHEN can we get these??
OVER 500,000 humans have died from AIDS in the USA.By the year 1996, 50,000 WOMEN had already died of AIDS in the USA alone.
By June 2000, CDC totals for USA were: 64,373 women died, 374,422 men died.
Over 800,000 people are living with AIDS in the USA as of 2000 — That’s one in 300 !!!
However, according to a Associated Press article from a Center for Disease Control report:
“Only about half the people at highest risk for HIV have been tested, suggesting US infection rates could be higher than health experts thought…..”
Women stats: CDC update Jan 28, 2002 ~~
HIV+ women number 29,682; w/AIDS 45,905
Are these the real numbers? Some health statistical experts need examine and graph the real situation for us all. Just the facts. Please and thank you.